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  • July 31, 2009

    Merwin: Lucky vs. Good

    By John Merwin

    When it comes to fishing, is it better to be lucky or to be good? 

    That’s an age-old question, of course, but worth talking about once in a while.

  • July 29, 2009

    Merwin: Thoughts from a Lure Buyer

    By John Merwin

    So I’d like to introduce you guys to my pal Tony the Lure Man. That happy-looking young fellow in the photo is Tony Witte, whose job it is to buy fishing lures for Cabela’s. All those great-looking lures you see in the catalogs at one time or another first had to pass muster with Tony. We were bass fishing together down Florida way a while back, where I tried picking the padlock on all those wonderful trade secrets he most certainly knows.

    Tony is a very nice guy and, when it comes to corporate operations, also extremely circumspect. I’d ask him some penetrating journalist-type question. He’d grin at me and shake his head, not saying a word. But he did finally tell me a couple of things that I thought were interesting ...

  • July 28, 2009

    Cermele: Light It Up

    By Joe Cermele

    That's me in the photo below fighting a seatrout with a five-weight fly rod on the dock of Getaway Adventure Lodge here in Port Mansfield, Texas. It happens to be my home away from home this week. Photographer Bill Honza snapped the (awesome) shot last night in the eerie green glow cast by the bait-attracting dock lights.

  • July 27, 2009

    Merwin: Camo Rods?

    By John Merwin

    Do we really need camo-pattern fishing rods? I was wondering that this morning while noting that the “best new rod” category at the recent ICAST fishing-trade show was won by a new rod series decked out in a variety of camouflage finishes. It just struck me that making a rod less visible is going to make me more likely to step on it or to shut the rod tip in a car door.

  • July 24, 2009

    Merwin: The Joys of Kayak Fishing

    By John Merwin

    So the trailered powerboat is staying in the yard this weekend because Mrs. Merwin and I will be using our kayaks. The larger local bass lakes where we’d ordinarily fish the bigger boat are just too crazy on these summer Saturdays--Jet-Skis, water skiers, and all the fast-cruising Bayliners make a little quiet fishing almost impossible. Fortunately, there are three backcountry bass ponds nearby that either have no-motor restrictions or just plain no boat ramp. Perfect kayak water, in other words.

  • July 23, 2009

    Dear Joe, They Stole My Muskie

    By Joe Cermele

    Last week, I got an email from loyal F&S reader Butch Cole. The photo you see below was attached. Butch writes:

    "I was wondering if I could trouble you to post a picture of this 50 inch muskie somewhere for the world to see. It was stolen from me. I had it on display in a local motel and apparently someone decided they needed it more than I did. I am offering a no questions asked reward for the return or the location of it. It was stolen in Park Rapids, Minnesota."

  • July 22, 2009

    Merwin: Quick, Buy a Boat

    By John Merwin

    In case you hadn’t noticed, the boating industry has tanked over the past couple of years along with numerous other sectors of our flagging economy. Major players such as Brunswick are reporting sales declines of 30 to 50 percent, manufacturing lay-offs are widespread, and many boat dealers can no longer find credit with which to finance retail inventories. Consumers, who once depended on home-equity loans to finance their new boats, are no longer buying as they once did.

  • July 21, 2009

    Cermele: The Scariest Hooks Ever?

    By Joe Cermele

    I was chatting with UK-based Tackle Trade World Editor Nick Marlow at ICAST and he was agog over Eagle Claw's new TroKar hooks. "They're like something you'd see in a hospital," he told me. "They're a bit scary." I immediately made my way over to find horror movie-like posters of bass pros with the Medieval TroKar logo under the slogan "Draw Blood." Well, I did draw blood with these hooks, some of which was my own.

  • July 20, 2009

    Merwin: Flip It Like Brauer

    By John Merwin

    Fabled bass pro Denny Brauer isn’t known as a musician, but he does have perfect pitch. That just means he’s the widely acknowledged master at pitching and flipping various baits for largemouth bass. I ran into Brauer at the recent ICAST fishing-tackle trade show, where we had a long talk and where I asked him for three specific tips that would help readers here perfect their pitching technique.

  • July 17, 2009

    Merwin: A Jewel of an Ultra-Light

    By John Merwin

    Here’s one of the best new reels I’ve seen making its debut here at ICAST, the annual fishing-tackle trade show, this year in Orlando, Florida. I’m very much into ultralight spinning, so I really liked this Quantum PT 05-size reel. It’s the smallest reel ever in that popular series and truly a mechanical jewel.

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